Teaching myself to cook, one recipe at a time.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Last year, I worked late on Valentine’s Day. When I got home, I found that hubby had made an elaborate dinner that ended with this delicious dessert.


This year, I had the day off, so I thought I’d return the favor.

I should mention that this recipe is stolen, once again, from Chef John at Food Wishes. It’s also available on all recipes, which I wish I’d realized before I watched his video and transcribed notes on how to do everything. I have yet to be disappointed by ANY of Chef John’s recipes, so I really recommend that you check out his site if there’s something you’ve been wanting to make.

The first step was supposed to be in a double boiler, but since I don’t have one, I just used a small saucepan on very low heat. Basically, melt together a bit of unsalted butter, brewed espresso (or leftover hazelnut coffee from that morning, in my case…sue me), and dark chocolate.When I was younger, I experimented a lot with melting chocolate, so I already had a good idea how to do this.




I moved the mixture to a clean bowl at this point, starting over with the same small saucepan. Add a bit of marsala wine or rum (I just had rum)…


Sugar… (don’t worry about this looking funky, it’s the unbleached, organic sugar that hubby and I put in our coffee).


And two egg yolks. Each of the puppies got a small snack of egg white, so they approved of this dessert wholeheartedly.


Cook it over medium-low heat until it’s frothy and thickened. At one point, I think I panicked that mine wasn’t doing anything, so I brought the saucepan into my office and compared the mixture in Chef John’s video with my own. I was reassured and decided to be patient. Eventually, it did look like this:


At that point, add in a bit of mascarpone cheese and stir it in.


Add this mixture to the chocolate mixture


And whisk it together.


Let it cool down for a while. I took this opportunity to make meatballs for our romantic, candlelit dinner.


When you’re ready to continue, take some heavy cream.


And beat the crap out of it until it looks like this. Chef John suggested doing this by hand to save on dishes, adding that it doesn’t take long, but it took me a while and I actually got really warm doing it! I swear I’m not that out of shape…. But next time I’ll use my electric mixer.


Add about half of the cream to the chocolate mixture


Fold it in until mixed, then add in the rest and fold that in, too. It should look like this.


I decided to be fancy and use a pastry bag to pipe my mousse. I’d never used one before, and I found that I had a lot of trouble filling the thing with only two hands. I ended up propping it against the fridge with my heavy cream and going from there (ignore the celery, it was for the spaghetti and meatballs).


Yay, it’s ready to pipe into martini glasses!


I’m not sure if it was what I was doing that was intriguing, or maybe the fact that I was talking to myself trying to get this to work out right, but the dogs found this step REALLY interesting.


Anyway, this is  what I ended up with!


Okay, I suck at piping. Maybe I needed a bigger tip. But I was still proud of this. Dusted it with some cocoa powder and stuck it in the fridge until dessert time.




Decadent. Romantic. Lovely.

I hope you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day <3

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